Noir Entry 7

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Ruins of Iso’Farsh
57 Summer, 2979

The dragon’s treasure was not in the entry chamber of the mansion, which failed to surprise the assassin. The aberrations lurking deeper in the manor house proved to be somewhat more difficult to manage than Vincent had anticipated, however. Three of the foul beings known as mind flayers stunned Kang and attempted to feast on the goliath’s brains, while the rest of the party was stuck dealing with the slaadi. Fortunately, all of the chaos-frogs were slain, freeing up the treasure hunters to rescue the erstwhile gladiator from the tentacled predators.

The encounter with the mastermind and his spiritual companions, however, was the one that really made Vincent start to wonder if his returning memories had begun to distract him too much from the basics of survival. He simply could not find telling openings in the defenses of the creatures for far too long. Rather than devouring The Pentifex Monolith’s brains, the illithid opted to reprogram him into a temporary minion. The cushani siblings took turns being consumed by the devourer spirit while the assassin failed to kill the lesser spirits.

After more than a minute of intense melee and ranged exchanges of might, the adventurers stood victorious, with the aberrants’ treasure as their prize. Included in this was an orb that once activated, played back the recorded voice of its owner discussing his disbelief about the suicide of one of the senior mages. The recording must have occurred some twenty years before, shortly before Iso’Latarin entered the war against the Betrayer. That marked two such orbs they had discovered in the city, but still that could be a coincidence.

It became a pattern when they ran into the crazed old mage.

Vincent didn’t catch the man’s name, but he also held an orb that seemed to be some sort of focus for the ritual that opened a portal to another realm. The portal collapsed when the treasure hunters breached the door to the former library, and the old man demanded to know who they were. SOL and Pentifex took point in the conversation, before the genasi finally nudged Kang into action.

The old man’s magic made him impossibly fast, and more spells assaulted the adventurers in the span of a few heartbeats than they’d dealt with in many of their battles thus far. Vincent hid in the mage’s shadow for several critical moments, eluding many of his spells before emerging to try to strike him down again. He finally found a chink in the wizard’s defenses and exploited it to devastating effect. When the old man finally fell, they collected his orb, as well.

This orb held a recording of the same speaker as the previous two, and spoke of the loss of more senior mages. Having witnessed two creatures using the orbs as foci for their rituals, a theory began to emerge – someone was perhaps trying to tap into the plane of existence where the mage of Iso’Latarin had been shunted by Excalon. Finally, Vincent felt that he had stumbled upon the evidence he’d been seeking for the Commander. And possibly a way to find and call the mages back from their exile. What gratitude they would have for anyone who was able to liberate them. How might such a powerful force repay such a debt?

The assassin considered the possibilities, and saw within them the key to his triumphant return.

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Noir Entry 7

Night Reign: Revelations zero